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M4 Sherman vs German 88mm Anti-Tank/Flak Gun -


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Lethalhavoc #101 Posted Sep 01 2016 - 05:22

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View PostDonward, on Sep 01 2016 - 05:20, said:

Oh boy, we got the Ronson myth being bandied about now.

 

And the reason you don't just cut a fuel line or throw a rag into a gas tank is because, you know, tanks can be repaired. Or even if it can't, parts from it can then be salvaged and used to repair other vehicles. Which is what - presumably - the Germans didn't want to happen.

 

This isn't Nazi Rocket Science here kiddies.

 

Please try to read and fully understand what I said. You're just embarrassing yourself.

Lethalhavoc #102 Posted Sep 01 2016 - 05:24

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View PostWulfeHound, on Sep 01 2016 - 05:22, said:

 

*facepalm*

 

That's what extinguishers are for

 

Foot soldiers moving forward in a combat situation carry fire extinguishers?

 

You're just grasping at straws now.

Surly you see I have a point?



Donward #103 Posted Sep 01 2016 - 05:32

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View PostLethalhavoc, on Aug 31 2016 - 20:22, said:

 

Please try to read and fully understand what I said. You're just embarrassing yourself.

 

Sure studly. Sure. I'm the one embarrassing myself.



WulfeHound #104 Posted Sep 01 2016 - 05:34

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View PostLethalhavoc, on Aug 31 2016 - 23:24, said:

 

Foot soldiers moving forward in a combat situation carry fire extinguishers?

 

You're just grasping at straws now.

Surly you see I have a point?

 

The extinguishers are on the tank.

 

The Germans had two choices regarding the knocked out M4:

1) They could try to set it on fire and make it unrecoverable that way, but that takes time and the Americans are fairly close by

2) Set some explosives on it and detonate, which takes a much shorter amount of time to do



Lethalhavoc #105 Posted Sep 01 2016 - 05:34

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View PostDonward, on Sep 01 2016 - 05:32, said:

 

Sure studly. Sure. I'm the one embarrassing myself.

 

Do yourself a favor and learn from Wulf, he's one of the best and most informed posters on these forums.

Lethalhavoc #106 Posted Sep 01 2016 - 05:39

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View PostWulfeHound, on Sep 01 2016 - 05:34, said:

 

The extinguishers are on the tank.

 

The Germans had two choices regarding the knocked out M4:

1) They could try to set it on fire and make it unrecoverable that way, but that takes time and the Americans are fairly close by

2) Set some explosives on it and detonate, which takes a much shorter amount of time to do

 

Shermans only have interior fire extinguishers.

Germans have both exterior and interior.

 

If the tank was destroyed by an ammo detonation the need to further damage the tank would be unnecessary.

A field maintenance depot would be unable to repair that kind of damage.


Edited by Lethalhavoc, Sep 01 2016 - 05:43.


WulfeHound #107 Posted Sep 01 2016 - 05:43

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View PostLethalhavoc, on Aug 31 2016 - 23:34, said:

 

Do yourself a favor and learn from Wulf, he's one of the best and most informed posters on these forums.

I'm not well-informed by a long shot.

View PostLethalhavoc, on Aug 31 2016 - 23:39, said:

 

Shermans only have interior fire extinguishers.

Germans have both exterior and interior.

 

If the tank was destroyed by an ammo detonation the need to further damage the tank would be unnecessary.

A field maintenance would be unable to repair that kind of damage.

 

That's when it gets sent back to a depot

Lethalhavoc #108 Posted Sep 01 2016 - 05:47

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View PostWulfeHound, on Sep 01 2016 - 05:43, said:

I'm not well-informed by a long shot.

 

That's when it gets sent back to a depot

 

You're really good at debating topics, so don't sell yourself short.

The only way to recover an ammo detonation damaged tank would be to ship it back to the USA.

And even then, the odds of repairing more than 10 or 20% of them would be slim.


Edited by Lethalhavoc, Sep 01 2016 - 05:47.


WulfeHound #109 Posted Sep 01 2016 - 05:49

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View PostLethalhavoc, on Aug 31 2016 - 23:47, said:

 

You're really good at debating topics, so don't sell yourself short.

The only way to recover an ammo detonation damaged tank would be to ship it back to the USA.

And even then, the odds of repairing more than 10 or 20% of them would be slim.

 

You'd be surprised at how effective the US depot repair system was.

Lethalhavoc #110 Posted Sep 01 2016 - 05:53

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View PostWulfeHound, on Sep 01 2016 - 05:49, said:

 

You'd be surprised at how effective the US depot repair system was.

 

They were great at repairing final drives, engines, transmissions, guns, road wheels, drive sprockets and alike.

From all accounts Shermans were great to work on. But they really couldn't do much about bulged lower hulls, or severe fire damage.


Edited by Lethalhavoc, Sep 01 2016 - 05:54.


mrmojo #111 Posted Sep 01 2016 - 11:55

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View PostWulfeHound, on Sep 01 2016 - 12:22, said:

 

*facepalm*

 

That's what extinguishers are for

 

 

*coughs*

 

Okinawa, 1945. The price of victory. A 6th Tank Bn M4A3 burns after being destroyed by a Japanese IED. The entire crew perished aboard their vehicle in this incident.

A Marine attempts to fight the fire with a fire bottle. Each tank carried two of these onboard, one in the turret, and one in the driver's compartment. Still image from USMC combat camera film

 

The Sherman had two fixed 10 pound CO fire extinguishers that could be triggered from inside the tank, and outside if you knew where the pull handles were. They also provided the crew with 2, four pound, CO fire extinguishers, on mounted on a bracket on the right side of the transmission, and the other mounted on the rear of the turret basket. (jeepy's website: http://www.theshermantank.com/category/sherman/ - not bad.)

 

 



mrmojo #112 Posted Sep 01 2016 - 12:30

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Wulfhund: "The most likely course of action ~ and then after it was knocked out the Germans placed a demolition charge on it to make the tank unusable for the Americans. Case in point, this Soviet M4A2:" (see picture above)

 

Actual caption :"Above shows another combat casualty filmed by the Germans sometime in 1944. They appear to have employed demolition charges in order to deny its recovery by the Soviets." http://the.shadock.free.fr/sherman_minutia/manufacturer/m4a2largehatches/m4a2_largehatches.html

 

Tank in background relatively intact - no demolition charges?

 

Engine deck relatively undamaged, bogie unit/s blown off right side, upper hull armour right side blown upwards, crater under tank - mine?

 


Edited by mrmojo, Sep 01 2016 - 12:47.


WulfeHound #113 Posted Sep 01 2016 - 14:34

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It could have been damaged by mines. All I can see from that photo is a Sherman Dana he d by a sufficient quantity of high explosives

mrmojo #114 Posted Sep 02 2016 - 10:23

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View PostWulfeHound, on Sep 01 2016 - 21:34, said:

It could have been damaged by mines. All I can see from that photo is a Sherman Dana he d by a sufficient quantity of high explosives

 

So, a shuffle back from absolute certainty then...

 



Bronezhilet #115 Posted Sep 02 2016 - 14:55

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View PostLethalhavoc, on Aug 31 2016 - 21:00, said:

So that really just leaves us guessing.

As I doubt anyone on these forums has much experience blowing up Shermans using vintage WWII German demolition charges.

Or have dropped 500lbs bombs on Shermans. Or even fired artillery shells at Shermans.

Actually, I have experience with explosives and (terminal) ballistics, and I can say with 100% certainty that OP is wrong. There is no way this damage could have been caused by just an ammorack explosion. I tried to explain why, but that explanation got ignored, for some reason. If there's something you don't understand, feel free to ask and I'll do my best to explain it.



mrmojo #116 Posted Sep 02 2016 - 15:40

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View PostWulfeHound, on Aug 27 2016 - 06:36, said:

 

To be fair he at least got the date and battle correct

 

View PostWulfeHound, on Sep 01 2016 - 05:16, said:

 

An assumption. I don't know for sure. It was hit at least 9 times by enemy fire, with hit #9 penetrating the mantlet through the telescope aperture. This particular E2 was part of C Company, 743rd Tank Battalion, 4rd Armored Division and was destroyed on 22 November 1945 near Lohn, Germany

 

View PostWalter_Sobchak, on Sep 01 2016 - 09:24, said:

Wulfe, you might want to recheck that date.  Hopefully US tanks were not being knocked out in November of 1945.

 

View PostWulfeHound, on Sep 01 2016 - 09:25, said:

 

I assumed 1945, but thanks for the correction.

 

Oh, the irony...



Donward #117 Posted Sep 02 2016 - 21:02

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View PostBronezhilet, on Sep 02 2016 - 05:55, said:

Actually, I have experience with explosives and (terminal) ballistics, and I can say with 100% certainty that OP is wrong. There is no way this damage could have been caused by just an ammorack explosion. I tried to explain why, but that explanation got ignored, for some reason. If there's something you don't understand, feel free to ask and I'll do my best to explain it.

 

Big words scare people Bronze. They'd rather bash Wulfie.

 

Which...

 

Is kind of fun to be perfectly honest.



Lethalhavoc #118 Posted Sep 02 2016 - 23:21

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View PostBronezhilet, on Sep 02 2016 - 14:55, said:

Actually, I have experience with explosives and (terminal) ballistics, and I can say with 100% certainty that OP is wrong. There is no way this damage could have been caused by just an ammorack explosion. I tried to explain why, but that explanation got ignored, for some reason. If there's something you don't understand, feel free to ask and I'll do my best to explain it.

 

I'm not claiming that the OP is right.

I'm simply stating that none of us could know the actual cause of the damage, because none of us were there and history doesn't record the event.

The few photographs we have I believe are German.

 

Do you think a direct artillery hit could have caused that damage?

Do you think a direct bomb hit could have caused that damage?

Do you think a demo charge could have caused that damage?

The answer to those 3 questions should be yes.


 

Now, the issue is that Wulf believed the damage was done post ammo explosion. Because the little documentation states "appears" to be a demo charge to deny the allies the chance to recover the tank.

But, that makes no sense, since the US lost roughly 100 Shermans over the course of these battles and this is the only Sherman to show this type of damage.

The other examples, show Shermans destroyed by gunfire with, or without their turrets being intact.

If you were to place a charge on a disabled Sherman, would you put the charge on the ammunition inside the fighting compartment?

Do you think that the damage was done before, after or during the ammo explosion?

 

In your experience with explosives, do you think it would be necessary to lay a demo charge in the engine compartment of a tank, that has already lost it's turret due to an ammo explosion?


 You see how many different possibilities there are?


 

I looked at the likelihood of the Germans leaving the .50cal and wasting a huge amount of explosives on just that single tank, that they were desperately short on and concluded that it was unlikely.

Am I right? Maybe, maybe not.

Maybe the Germans dropped a bomb or a shell on it, Maybe the RAF or the US dropped a bomb or shell on it, thinking it was captured or just an Axis tank.

But you of all people should know there are far easier ways to destroy a disabled tank, without the waste of precious supplies.


Edited by Lethalhavoc, Sep 03 2016 - 01:43.


Bronezhilet #119 Posted Sep 03 2016 - 19:52

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View PostLethalhavoc, on Sep 02 2016 - 23:21, said:

I'm simply stating that none of us could know the actual cause of the damage, because none of us were there and history doesn't record the event.

But that's no reason to stop analysing the event.

 

Block Quote

 Do you think a direct artillery hit could have caused that damage?

Do you think a direct bomb hit could have caused that damage?

Do you think a demo charge could have caused that damage?

The answer to those 3 questions should be yes.

This is incorrect. An artillery shell is incapable of doing this kind of damage, it simply doesn't contain enough explosive filler. That is, if it manages to penetrate the armour. Which HE shells are really bad at. ~40 mm is enough to stop 150+ mm artillery shells.

 

It's the same with bombs, you need a decently sized bomb with a delayed fuse, otherwise you're not going to get through. And even if you do, you need an almost perfectly centered hit on the engine to get this kind of damage. Which you wouldn't get because pressure build-up inside the engine compartment will be different from a demolition charge since the explosive filler is encased in steel. Not only that, the filler might actually be different as well, but I'm not terribly sure what WW2 era bombs and demolition charges actually used. Unless this is an incredibly lucky hit from a bomber coming from behind the Sherman, which is super unlikely. There is no reason a bomber returning from enemy lines to still have his bombs.

 
Looking at the actual damage done, the detonation most likely occured somewhere under the engine hatches, slightly off center to the right of the tank (looking facing the tank). The damage to both sponson side armour plates is almost symmetrical, but the right panel peeled open slightly more, indicating that the pressure/shock wave on that side was bigger. Panels on both sides also have a kink near the rear, which tells us that the detonation didn't occur near the rear of the vehicle, but more forward. Coupled with the fact the engine hatches are located there, it is an indication of where the detonation took place.
 
Lets take a look at another picture posted here:
bxIx7Vrh.jpg
Somebody in this topic suggested this damage was caused by a mine. This is incorrect. It's a combination of various things.
 
The bulge on the sponson and peeled back top armour is definitely caused by a demolition charge, while the suspension damage is the cause of a mine. Why both?
Well, if it was just a demolition charge, there would be no significant crater, while there obviously is. It wouldn't damage tracks on both sides either, because the demolition charge was placed on the right side of the tank, behind the bit that's up-armoured. It wasn't a huge mine either, since the hull sides are still intact. If the mine was capable of peeling back the top armour and bulging the sponson side armour, it would definitely damage the lower hull side armour. But it didn't.
While a demolition charge in the sponson would be capable of blowing out the sponson bottom and damaging the suspension, it wouldn't be capable of creating a crater, since it's effectively an airborne detonation. Which is physically incapable of creating a semi-deep crater. Only explosions occuring in the ground create craters big enough for a Sherman suspension unit to fit in.
 
The demolition charge was placed behind that uparmoured section under the turret ring because, unless I'm very mistaken, that's where part of the ammunition was stored. This is most likely a smaller charge than the other one, but it was placed to cause an ammorack explosion. So basically the tank was rendered immobile by a mine and subsequently completely destroyed by blowing up the ammorack with the use of a demolition charge.


Lethalhavoc #120 Posted Sep 03 2016 - 21:35

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You ever hear of a Stuka or an HE-111? Also no one said it was returning to base with a bomb load.

You might also want to look up the bomb types used in WWII.

It could have very easily been destroyed in the initial stages of the battle, which means that it was on the front line.

Remember that this tank was first knocked out by the Germans who over run these positions, and then over ran again by the Americans who took them back.

 

Direct bomb hits ARE rare, which might explain why this is the only Sherman that suffered this damage out of 100 knocked out in these battles.


 

 

The armor on that Sherman as already noted in previous posts, state that it was near the first, if not the first vehicle made. So the quality of the welds are also in dispute.

So a 155mm arty round could well have done that damage. The armor on a Shermans engine deck is how thick exactly? 10mm? So is that enough to stop an artillery shell?

 

You also didn't answer my question of, where would you have placed the demo charge? Engine compartment, or crew compartment?

You also didn't answer my question of, if this tank had already suffered an ammo explosion that was sufficient to destroy the fighting compartment and remove the turret, would you feel the need to place a demo charge on it?


Edited by Lethalhavoc, Sep 03 2016 - 21:37.





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